The 5 Best PIM (Product Information Management) Software for Your Magento 2 Store in 2019
Top 5 PIM Solutions and How to Integrate Them with Magento
When expanding your catalog of products, you need the right Product Information Management (PIM) system.
A report by Informatica shows that 65% of companies have started using PIM (product information management software) for their ecommerce website. According to Informatica, PIM solutions reduce errors related to product information and minimize the costs for printed catalogs. These are some of the reasons why ecommerce companies use PIM, but not the only reasons.
What is product information management and what are the benefits of a PIM in your omnichannel environment? Let’s dig in to find the best product information management software for your Magento 2 Store.
What is PIM system?
Product Information Management (PIM) software provides a single place to gather, handle, maintain, update and organize product information, create product catalogs, and distribute data to your sales and ecommerce channels.
An ecommerce PIM software is the best way to enrich product information and descriptions. It eliminates the painstaking tasks that are required when using spreadsheets to handle product data. PIM tools usually connect smoothly to ecommerce as they are easy to integrate.
Your product data system should be able to import data from sources such as ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) Systems, DAM (Digital Asset Management) Systems, Box folders, spreadsheets, and accept flat files (Excel) via an FTP (File Transfer Protocol) location as well as direct integrations using an open API (application programming interface).
An ecommerce PIM software can be used to handle various types of information:
Technical information: product specifications like color, size, material, and weight.
Emotional information: vivid product descriptions, stories, and images that help to create emotional connections with the customer.
Usage information: product descriptions with where and how to use, and sample usage suggestions.
Note: PIM software is focused on product descriptions and specifications. Transaction information such as inventory levels and costs are not handled in a PIM solution.
Thus, ecommerce companies who use a PIM solution can smoothly and quickly create engaging product experiences necessary to simplify product catalog management.
When should you consider a PIM system?
Retail companies of all sizes and industries can benefit from using Product Information Management software. However, a PIM system becomes an important marketing tool if your company:
has a complex product content setup with a large assortment of products or attributes and needs immense manpower to organize the quality
has multiple distribution channels (omnichannel commerce) and wants to choose which products will be released in each channel
wants to accelerate the launch of new products to the market
sells internationally and wants to process diverse products in various languages and markets
wants to provide higher quality product information and avoid a lack of consistency between different channels
needs to update product information systematically and collect data from multiple suppliers
expands or transmits product offerings multiple times per year
wishes to minimize customer complaints and have fewer product returns
wants to improve compliance processes and adhere to specific regulations in every country
needs to track sales progress and build custom product feeds
How a PIM software can benefit your ecommerce business
Product Information Management software brings many benefits to your ecommerce business, having a significant impact on your marketing strategies.
Create content optimized for all your sales channels
In the current hyper-competitive ecommerce market, every retail company wants to be everywhere their customers are. Product marketers and managers need to be able to open up new distribution channels and create rich, consistent content optimized for all sales channels.
Unfortunately, every channel has diverse product information requirements in order to obtain optimal sales results. By creating a unique, up-to-date, credible source of product information, PIM software gives your marketing team the tools to smoothly distribute optimized product descriptions regardless of channels.
Оffer high quality and enriched product content
Providing comprehensive and enhanced product data converts customers at a higher rate. In an omnichannel environment, the challenges of producing comprehensive information can be a daunting task, especially when it also needs to be tailored to different markets, languages, and channels. PIM ensures that data is contextual and based upon the channel to provide accurate product descriptions that contribute to higher conversion rates.
Reduce product returns by eliminating manual data errors
PIM solutions give you the security of knowing that all of the product data is accurate, up-to-date, and adapted to all channels.
Product information management software guarantees that customers get a true understanding of your product before buying it. Thus, PIM helps to reduce return rates and related costs by eliminating manual data errors, avoiding incomplete and incorrect product information. This all helps to provide complete and relevant product content across all channels.
Boost team productivity and increase team effectiveness
A PIM solution automates up to 80% of manual, tedious, and repetitive tasks so that your managers can focus on creating evocative product descriptions. For instance, a PIM reduces time-consuming inefficiencies such as the need to duplicate data across various channels or distribute product information from one department to another.
Ecommerce PIM software automates resource-heavy processes with built-in workflows that guide each ecommerce manager through their next steps. This boosts team productivity and enables members of the sales team to add missing product information and collaborate across divisions, departments, and countries.
Centralize and structure product information for the new technologies
There are a number of ecommerce trends currently shaping the internet retail market: some include voice assistants, chatbots, progressive web apps (PWA), augmented reality (AR), and artificial intelligence (AI). What these technology trends have in common is a growing need for structured data. PIM centralizes and organizes product information, so it becomes easier to implement the latest technologies.
The top 5 PIM systems for your Magento 2 Store
Currently, more than 130,000 retailers use Magento 2 as a basis for their ecommerce websites. There are plenty of product information management vendors that can help you to operate product information for your Magento store. To make this clear, we decided to compile a list of the best Magento PIM systems.
Akeneo is a highly customizable open-source PIM software that enables merchants to manage all necessary product content and data in one place and export it to different channels. In addition, you can handle content in multiple languages/currencies and choose what data to export, how to export it, when, and where.
Akeneo is available in three editions – Community, which is free, and Enterprise and Cloud, which are subscription-based. With Akeneo, you’ll have the option to import your data from different Excel and CSV files, connect to third party systems, and onboard your suppliers to get a full and clear view of all your imports. Merchants can easily connect their Magento 2 store with the Akeneo PIM software to easily export and import thousands of products.
Price: Free / Open Source
Integrations: Magento 2, WooCommerce, Google Shopping, eBay, AliExpress, Salesforce Commerce Cloud, WordPress, BigCommerce, and more.
Who it’s for: Akeneo’s features fit almost every type of business.
InRiver PIM software helps B2C and B2B multi-channel commerce in handling and distributing relevant product content from a central place to various sales channels in multiple languages.
With InRiver you have a single point of control where you can manage inbound and outbound product information from one dashboard. Furthermore, InRiver includes Planner App so you can plan and track activities, control work process, and cooperate with your sales team directly in PIM.
InRiver even enables you to manage marketing content, such as customer ratings, reviews, comments and behavior, and use them in other areas of your ecommerce business. Third-party apps like Magecloud offer smooth inRiver integration with your Magento 2 Store.
Price: Contact Vendor/Cloud, SaaS, Web.
Integrations: Amazon, Google Shopping, Magento 2, Shopify Plus, Salesforce Commerce Cloud, and more.
Who it’s for: InRiver fits both B2B and B2C retailers. It’s ideal for any business with lots of product data across multiple channels.
Pimcore is an enterprise-ready, open-source PIM that combines many useful functions such as data modeling, data management, and workflow management. With Pimcore you can seamlessly manage complex product information and transmit it to multiple channels.
Pimcore enables you to centralize and structure all your marketing and technical product information, allowing you to deliver product data across all customer touchpoints. Pimcore is the only open-source and consolidated digital platform comprising of Product Information Management (PIM), Master Data Management (MDM), Digital Asset Management (DAM), and ecommerce. You can easily integrate Pimcore with Magento.
Price: Free/Open Source
Integrations: Magento 2, Shopify, Amazon, Google Shopping, eBay, Facebook, and more
Who it’s for: Pimcore fits companies of any size and in any industry.
Salsify is a cloud-based PIM software platform that collects and stores marketing content, product descriptions, and logistics data in multiple languages, all in one place. Salsify allows you to manage product attributes and deliver approved content for every channel. Salsify integrates easily with all major ERP (enterprise resource planning), DAM (digital asset management), and ecommerce platforms.
With Salsify, you can centralize and transform videos, images, and other files for use across a variety of channels. Salsify supports analytics on content performance and is available through custom-priced packages based on your business needs. A third-party connector called Trellis offers smooth Salsify integration with Magento.
Price: Contact Vendor/Cloud, SaaS, Web
Integrations: Amazon, Magento 2, Shopify Plus, SAP, Oracle, and more.
Who it’s for: Salsify PIM is a comprehensive tool for big teams with a lot of data changes.
Bluestone is a user-friendly API-driven PIM software that manages digital images and product content and helps to build a structure for your categories and subcategories which can be exported and imported in various formats, including CSV.
By connecting new sales across all market channels Bluestone PIM helps to improve customer experience and speed up time to the launch of new products. Bluestone PIM Magento 2 extension delivers an easy and automated catalog management for products, images, categories, and attributes in Magento. Thanks to out-of-the-box single-click sync, Bluestone PIM Product Sync allows automatic data export to Magento 2.
Price: $1,000 per month/Cloud, SaaS, Web
Integrations: Magento 2, Amazon, Adobe InDesign, and more.
Who it’s for: Bluestone fits companies of any size and in any industry.
How to integrate a PIM system into Magento 2
Below, we shed light on how to integrate any PIM system into a Magento 2 store using third-party extensions. The integration allows you to manage product information at the front end through your Magento ecommerce site.
To add a PIM solution, follow these steps:
First of all, you should import the category and product data into the PIM system.
Next, conduct a Magento facility test. Make sure that the same ﬁelds of the PIM database exist in Magento.
Then, create the PIM connection channel and give the ﬁelds the same name in the PIM system and in Magento.
Install the third-party extension.
Conduct initial tests with just a few products to ensure that everything works properly.
Verify that all product content is synchronized accordingly, especially images and custom attributes, which are usually the most problematic.
If the results are satisfactory, add the rest of the products until the catalog is full.
PIM solutions are the key business performance drivers. With PIM systems, ecommerce companies can manage, centralize, enrich, and distribute product data from various sources and in different formats across multiple channels. The adoption of ecommerce PIM software can help you to save time and start distributing quality product content that converts.
Make sure that the PIM system you choose is the most beneficial for your retail business. If you’re of two minds about what PIM solution to choose and don’t have the requisite experience in-house, contact us and we will provide you with integration services based on professional analysis of every part of your retail business.